Monthly Archives: April 2013

The Internet of Things

Our connected world is getting bigger all the time. And not just through people with phones and computers. The number of devices connected to the internet is expected to surpass the total number of humans on Earth before the end of this year. Welcome to the brave new world called the internet of things.

It's not a new concept, but there have been some new developments of late that promise to make it more of a near-term reality.

As the New York Times reported yesterday, a consortium of big companies have agreed on a new open standard for machine-to-machine communication. This is already used in everything from healthcare devices to stock trading. But having open standards will make it easier for more devices all over the world, connecting via the mobile web, to speak the same language.

But they won't only talk to each other – connected things will need to talk to us too. It's a situation that has both complex technical issues as well as political and commercial challenges.

Bringing together those theoretical questions with practical applications of the technology, there is an upcoming conference on the internet of things: it's happening in Sao Paolo this May.

(No word on whether your fridge needs a separate invitation.)

;)

Opera Mini update for Android

As we race towards a release of the new Opera for Android, we are also continuing to work hard on our existing products. Today we released Opera Mini 7.5.2 for Android. In addition to the security and stability updates, we also made improvements to the following:

  • Improved font calculation method
  • Improved fonts for hi-res devices
  • Page layout improvements
  • Various stabilization fixes

For more information or questions check out this forum post.

Update:

We had a small font issue with this build. An update has been released!

More open online resources

Following up on our earlier post this week on free and open educational resources on the web, there's even better news to report. As of yesterday, the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) is now live. More than three years in the making, the library brings together the collections of museums, universities, public libraries and other institutions around the USA in one central and accessible place. There are millions of items to discover, from books and manuscripts to movies, photographs and sound recordings.

On the other side of the (virtual) Atlantic, Europeana is the DPLA's continental counterpart. It also offers a cultural treasure trove that's free to explore, from Europe's leading galleries, archives and libraries. It also has a blog, and even its own Pinterest feed.

Enjoy!

Education on the web

Most of us are well acquainted with the fun and entertaining parts of the internet. But did you know about MOOCs and other types of open educational resources available on the web?

Last month, the second annual Open Education Week was held, showcasing the many free and open educational resources available to anyone who can get online.

From the School of Open to the Khan Academy, Coursera to open resources from the Internet Archive, you can take courses in math, web design – even the Norwegian language!

Have you participated in any open educational courses before, either as a student or teacher? What do you think?